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Egypt's National Dish, a unique and mouthwatering mix of ingredients influenced by Italian, British and Indian cuisines.

Koshari - Rice, lentils, macaroni, tomato sauce, Dakkah, chickpeas and crispy onions
Koshari - Rice, lentils, macaroni, tomato sauce, Dakkah, chickpeas and crispy onions

Recipe modified from Middle Eats


1 14.5 ounce can diced or crushed tomatoes

1/2 cup dry green lentils

1/2 cup dry macaroni or ditalini pasta

1 cup dry chickpeas

1/2 cup dry brown rice

4 onions

1 head of garlic

1 Roma tomato

1 lemon

5 Tablespoons white vinegar

3 1/4 teaspoons salt

3 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin

3/4 teaspoon black pepper

1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 teaspoon ground coriander


For the chickpeas

1. Soak dried chickpeas overnight in a large amount of water.

2. The next day drain the chickpeas and in a large pot boil a large amount of water and add the soaked chickpeas.

3. Add half a Roma tomato, half an onion sliced in quarters and 2 cloves of garlic to the pot.

4. Add 1 teaspoon cumin, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon cayenne to the pot and leave to boil for 1-2 hours (check after an hour - mine were tender after an hour). Turn off heat and let chickpeas sit in broth until needed.

For the lentils

1. Add 2 cups of water to a pot and boil.

2. Add 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon cumin to the water along with the lentils.

3. Boil for 15-20 minutes until cooked through but not mushy.

4. Strain the lentils using a colander and set aside.

For the tomato sauce

1. Add 2 Tablespoons of olive oil to a sauce pan on medium high heat.

2. Mince 5 garlic cloves and fry in the pot for a few minutes until fragrant and bubbly.

3. Before the garlic browns add 2 Tablespoons of white vinegar and stir.

4. Add a 14.5 ounce can of diced or crushed tomatoes or tomato passata (if using diced or crushed tomatoes, blend them in a small blender or food processor first).

5. Season with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper.

6. Simmer for 20-30 minutes until thickened.

For the Dakkah (Garlic Vinegar Sauce)

1. Mince 4 garlic cloves and add to a small bowl.

2. Add 2-1/2 Tablespoons white vinegar, 2-1/2 Tablespoons + 1 teaspoon water and 2 Tablespoons lemon juice.

3. Add 1 teaspoon cumin, 1/2 teaspoon coriander, 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper and 1/4 teaspoon salt and mix to combine.

For the crispy onions

1. Slice onions into thin strips against the grain of the onion

2. Place in a large bowl and add 1 teaspoon cumin, 1/2 teaspoon black pepper and 1 teaspoon salt.

3. Mix thoroughly until all the onion strips have been separated from each other and let sit for 30-60 minutes.

4. Add frying oil to a large pot about 1/2in deep. When hot add the onion in batches.

5. Fry for 8-12 minutes per batch until golden in color. Remove and place on a paper towel lined tray. They will continue to darken and crisp after removing.

6. After a few minutes on the tray, move to a second tray with clean paper towels so they do not reabsorb any oil.

7. Reserve remaining onion oil.

For the koshari base

1.Rinse rice. Add to a medium pot with 3 cups of water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes or until al dente. Drain and pour into a bowl and toss with 1/2 teaspoon cumin.

2. In another medium pot, boil macaroni in salted water until al dente. Drain macaroni and pour into a medium sized bowl and immediately toss with 2 Tablespoons of the reserved onion oil.

3. Add the cooked macaroni and lentils to the rice and mix until evenly combined.

To plate koshari

1. Add a generous serving of the koshari base to a platter.

2. Spoon the tomato sauce over the koshari base

3. Add a few tablespoons of the Dakkah over the top of the tomato sauce.

4. Sprinkle some of the cooked chickpeas over the top of the dish (use remaining chickpeas in another dish).

5. Add fried onions to the very top.

Alternately, leave each component in separate dishes and let each person build their own plate.

Koshari Platter
Koshari Platter

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